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Celebrate International Women's Day with Special Guest Speaker Dr Gill Hicks

In March we celebrated International Women's Day (IWD), recognising the achievements of women at our first major Women in Business lunch for 2017.  

Featuring internationally acclaimed keynote speaker, Dr Gill Hicks, the lunch embodied the theme of this year's IWD, 'Be Bold for Change'. After losing both legs in the London terrorist bombings in 2005, Gill learnt to walk again and made the decision to dedicate her life to advocating for peace. Now a thought-provoking, powerful and life affirming speaker, Gill left her impressive career at the helm of some of the UK's most respected and prestigious institutions to share her story with the world. Having endured unimaginable trauma, Gill's remarkable courage and determination to truly triumph over tragedy is nothing but inspirational. 

Celebrating inspirational women closer to home, we also showcased the achievements of Western Sydney women, proudly hosting the Western Sydney University's Women of the West Awards, announcing the winners at our lunch. 
This year our IWD event will support two fabulous services that care for critically ill newborn babies - NETS (The Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service) and the Grace Centre for Newborn Intensive Care at The Children's Hospital at Westmead. Thanks to the generosity of sponsors, supporters and guests we raised over $14,000 to support these great charities and their work!

Rumour Has It

We were thrilled to launch our 10th Anniversary year at Women in Business with this exclusive members' only evening at Riverside Theatres Parramatta in February!!

Women in Business members and their guests were treated to a private pre-show cocktail function where they met stage and television star Naomi Price (The Voice Australia) before she delivered her award-winning portrayal of international superstar, Adele, in Rumour Has It.

Charting the incredible rise of THE blockbuster soul sensation of the modern age live in story and song, the show has received standing ovations across the country including acclaimed seasons at Sydney Opera House, Hamer Hall and Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Naomi performed Adele's greatest hits from a mega-platinum catalogue, including Rolling in the Deep, Someone Like You, Turning Tables, Set Fire to the Rain and the Oscar-winning Skyfall, while spilling intimate details about a meteoric rise that has captured hearts across the globe.

Lunch of Champions

Guests were inspired and motivated at our final Women in Business lunch for 2016 by our fabulous female champions who entertained with their stories of courage and determination. 

We were joined by Jana Pittman, two times World Champion and four times Commonwealth Champion in the sport of athletics, and the first woman to represent Australia in both a summer and winter Olympic Games.

Now studying a Bachelor of Medicine & Surgery at the Western Sydney University, Jana is mum to nine year old Cornelis and little sister Emily, one, and expecting number three early next year. If you’re not already feeling exhausted reading that, Jana also runs her own health, fitness and motivational speaking business. She is Australia’s national cervical cancer and 'save the box' ambassador with future aspirations of becoming a surgeon specialising in gynaecological cancer.

Following Jana’s keynote, she hosted a panel discussion with three inspiring athletes – gold medallist paralympian Ellie Cole, Olympic silver medallist Melissa Wu, and Olympic snowboarder Holly Crawford - who share both their sporting and personal trials and triumphs.

As always, there were great prizes up for grabs on the day to support the Australian Cervical Cancer Foundation who celebrated Cervical Cancer Awareness Week in November.

Securing Your Financial Future

As Women in Business, we're intelligent, sassy and independent but we all have something to learn about being more financially savvy.

Featuring two financially switched on guest speakers, guests at this special lunch learnt tips and strategies to set them on the path to building wealth and securing their financial future.

Diana Saad, Senior Financial Planner, BT Financial Group

Diana specialises in wealth protection and intergenerational wealth creation and is committed to unlocking new and improved ways of helping women achieve their financial goals. Diana guided guests through:

  • What you need to know about superannuation including a fascinating insight into the superannuation gender gap
  • Overcoming some of the superannuation challenges faced by women
  • Investment patterns of women in the workforce and how to choose from various asset classes
  • Securing your financial future through setting goals and planning
  • Funding for self-managed super funds

Lillie Cawthorn, Industrial Real Estate investor, author of The Money Factory

Lillie has been investing in industrial real estate in Sydney for 15 years and also has investment interests in France and the US. When Lillie discovered that very few women invest in industrial real estate, she wrote The Money Factory, a step-by-step guide to encourage investors, particularly women, to explore opportunities in the sector. Lillie shared:

  • Her personal journey as a woman in business and how she has built her wealth
  • Insights into her experiences in working with women to secure their financial future
  • How you can use industrial property as an investment strategy

Boardroom Conversations

This Women in Business event, Boardroom Conversations, was held in partnership with Women on Boards (WoB) for current and aspiring female directors. 

The highly informative session covered some key issues essential to understanding your role and responsibilities as a director and the challenges you may face along the way.

Claire Braund, WoB Executive Director, led a discussion with guest speaker Kim Ivantsoff, who has extensive experience in directors' responsibilities and conduct risk. A panel discussion with Kim, Carole-Anne Priest and Ruth Medd focussed on:

  • Operational and governance issues for boards
  • How our panelists plan to meet the challenges ahead
  • Establishing a collegiate and high performing team in the boardroom
  • Where things can come unstuck, and
  • The panel's personal approach to directorship.